• Kellogg Design

    November 16th, 2019

KDC is the largest MBA business design competition in the world



About the challenge

The Kellogg Design Challenge (KDC) is a one day event hosted by the IDEA Club at the Kellogg School of Management, that brings together future business leaders from top MBA and design programs around the world to apply design thinking methods to solve complex business challenges faced by a forward thinking corporate partner.

KDC isn't just another case competition. By partnering with top academics, practitioners, businesses and industry experts, students will have the opportunity to put human-centered design theories into practice and compete for total prize money of $20,000.

How could Prime Video become a destination for movie and TV viewers, outside of times when they're planning on watching something? (i.e. what is our 3-minute coffee line experience)


First place prize


Second place prize


3rd place prize


Sponsor Announced

September 24th

The sponsor for this year's theme is announced in-person and via slack. Registration also opens on this date (teams of 4 to 6).

Applications Due

October 10th

Team registrations due for both Kellogg and non-Kellogg participants. For registered teams:

Prompt announced on the 10th. Innovation plan due on the 14th. Shortlisted teams notified on the 17th.


October 15th - November 5th

For teams selected, there are 3 workshops from prominent design consultancies to prepare you for the competition / assist you in developing compelling solutions.


November 16th

The big weekend at Kellogg! Pitch your ideas to an all-star judging panel, learn more about the theme from thought leaders, network with MBA students from top B-schools and have fun in Chicago.

Past Challenges and Sponsors


“How might we help patients overcome the behavioral and psychological barriers to adoption of insulin pump therapy for T1 Diabetes?”


“How might Pampers promote neonatal health in a way that engenders trust?”


"Develop and deliver the concept for a product, service, or experience innovation that increases McDonald’s customers’ loyalty and use, while addressing the tension between an “easy, enjoyable” customer experience and a goal to reduce waste.”


"Apply the user-centric design process to enhance the application of genuine care, personal interaction, or effortless experiences as part of Hyatt Gold Passport while capitalizing on current market trends."


"How might we leverage technology trends in consumer healthcare to revolutionize the way patients engage with their healthcare providers?"


"Apply user-centric design to develop a social value proposition for the Scotch brand, which will drive customer purchasing behavior in the elementary and middle school market. Show how Scotch can implement this in market.”

Workshop Leaders and Judges

Previous Champions and Participating Schools


Kellogg School of Management


Rotman School of Management
Team Lorem Ipsum


Kellogg School of Management
Team Designables

Event Location

Upcoming Events

  • Nov

    IA Collaborative Lunch & Learn

    Join IA Collaborative and the IDEA Club to learn about real-world applications of business strategy’s role in design thinking through the work and experience at IA. The IA team will be leading the conversation, with plenty of room for Q&A.
  • Nov

    IDEA Career Workshop #2: Alumni Hangout

    Google Hangout with 3-4 working professionals who use design/innovation as a superpower in their current roles. Great opportunity to feature some of our fave alumni! Students have the chance to ask them questions about life in the industry, their role, etc.
  • Nov

    Kellogg Design Challenge 2019

    Hosted by Northwestern’s Kellogg School of Management, KDC is the largest business design case competition for MBA students. KDC provides future business leaders the opportunity to apply design thinking methods to complex business challenges faced by a real-world corporate partner. Previous sponsors/partners have included Medtronic, Proctor & Gamble, McDonald's Sustainability Group, Hyatt, Fortive, IDEO, Fjord, IA Collaborative, Allstate and Doblin
  • Nov

    Fireside Chat with Director of Prime Video Andrew Watts

    Andrew Watts leads the Worldwide Core Product Experience, Design, and Research teams. He previously led the Digital Video Store business for Amazon, which included responsibility for distribution, category management, content acquisition and management, and global product development for the Amazon Video Digital Store in Austria, Germany, Japan, the United Kingdom, and the United States. Prior to that role, he led Worldwide Product Management for Digital Video. Prior to joining Amazon in 2008, Watts worked in Product Marketing at Qpass and New Product Development and Strategy at U.S. Cellular where he focused on marketing and developing mobile digital entertainment products and services with both existing and new business partners. Early in his career Watts held positions in product marketing at goReader, an education-focused tech startup, and in public relations at Golin/Harris International. Watts holds a master's degree in business administration from the Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University.
  • Nov

    Kellogg Design Challenge Keynote by IA Collaborative Founder & CEO Dan Kraemer

    IA Collaborative is a global design and innovation consultancy. They work with some of the biggest brands in the world to bring new innovations to market. Dan Kraemer is Founder and Chief Design Officer at IA Collaborative. Since founding IA in 2000, Dan is focused on leading change at the convergence of design and business strategy, and works with global leaders to envision possible futures, advance corporate strategy and launch new ventures. Dan is an award-winning designer, international speaker and thought leader, and also a Kellogg alum.
  • Nov

    IDEA Career Workshop #3: Portfolio & Resume Workshop

    Walk through best practices, tips, and tricks for making your portfolio and resume stand out, including a review of examples from past classmates.
  • Nov

    Kellogg x Booth Design Social

    Joining forces with the Booth Innovation and Design Club, we will be heading downtown for a happy hour and escape room activity! Awesome opportunity to network with other like-minded folks from Booth. More details to come.
  • Dec

    IDEA Career Workshop #4: Interview Prep, Part I

    Share what first-years can do over the winter break to put their best foot forward in January/February interviews.

FAQs (Logistics)

When is the registration deadline?

We have extended the registration deadline to October 10 at 11.59 pm CT

When is the deadline for submitting innovation plans?

The deadline for submitting innovation plans is October 14 at 12 pm CT

Can non-MBA programs participate in KDC?

Yes KDC is open to all graduate programs, however multi-disciplinary teams including MBAs are highly encouraged.

What is the minimum and maximum size of a team?

Teams should have 4-6 members; at least 4 members must be present on the day of the competition.

When do I need to arrive at Kellogg for KDC?

Please plan to arrive by Friday night so you are ready for an early start on Saturday Nov 16.

I’m not going to be in town on Nov. 16, can I still participate in KDC?

At least 4 participants from your team should be present in person on the day of the challenge. If you have a sufficient number of team members that can attend and they are okay with your absence, this is up to you and your team.

Do I need a Google account to register my team? I don’t have a Google account, but I’m being asked to log in to complete the Team Registration.

The registration is how we will collect emails for subsequent communications. Since we are using the form to collect your emails, google requires sign-in to avoid phishing. Thus, one person on your team will need a google account in order to submit the form.

Where can I find information on joining the official kickoff / workshops remotely?

Remote login information will be updated on the campus groups event page for the official kickoff / workshops. Kellogg teams are encouraged to attend in-person by registering on campus groups above.

Can all the teams join the three workshops or just the selected teams?

Yes, we have opened up all workshops to those who registered for KDC.

Do all 80 teams have to travel to Kellogg even if they don’t make it to the top 24?

No. The KDC event is reserved for the top 24 teams.

Should the innovation plan be a word document or a 2-slide presentation is OK?

The innovation plan can be a 1-2 page written document or powerpoint that addresses how you plan to get close to stakeholders, understand the market, and test your prototypes.

FAQs (Challenge Prompt)

Is the prompt targeting the global or the regional market?

Amazon Prime Video is available in 200+ territories on hundreds of connected devices. Your solution should have a global reach, while considering the nuances that make regional users unique. Use the “working backwards from the customer” framework to identify and distill any relevant user differences across regions that may help to target a solution with the broadest impact.

Are we to target the coffee line experience exclusively?

No, the coffee line experience is meant to highlight an example of the ways in which Amazon Prime Video can be a destination for viewers beyond when they are planning to watch a movie or TV.

Could you please elaborate on the meaning of "outside of times when they're planning on watching something?”

Typically Amazon Prime Video is a destination for viewers who have made a decision to watch a movie or TV. The prompt is asking you to think about times for users to interact with Prime Video outside of this moment, perhaps when they are in line for coffee or other instances that might expand Prime Video’s reach.

Is there a target year to launch the new service? (e.g 1 year? 5 years?)

There is no set target launch date. Your solution timeline should consider how quickly innovation and technology evolves, and offer a realistic product launch that would not be feel obsolete give your proposed time frame.

What types of design research does the Prime Video team usually engage in?

Innovation at Amazon starts with the customer and works backwards. The Prime Video team engages in deep user research to obsess over customer experience and works vigorously to earn and keep customer trust.

What should we focus on? Content (new types of content) or product (new app, interface)?

Focus your deliverable on the product itself, not the content.


Contact kelloggdesignchallenge@gmail.com